Food to try in Puerto Rico - fried snacks

Must Try Puerto Rican Street Food

Drive any direction on the island and you’ll find food trucks, road side stalls and little kiosks serving a selection of Puerto Rican street food. The perfect ‘finger food’ for a snack or for a pit stop on your road trip.

You’ll notice a lot of frituras, or fried foods – no Puerto Rican ‘must try’ food list would be complete without them! While they’re not exactly diet-friendly, there are all delicious and most importantly, there’s something for everyone! We’ve included some of our favorites below.

If you’re staying with us in the San Juan area, we’d recommend heading to Piñones or the kiosks at Luquillo because you’ll find all our recommended street food options at either location. When picking a place, just look for somewhere busy with lots of locals. For the tastiest fritura keep an eye out for anything straight from the fryer.


A trip to Puerto Rico wouldn’t be complete without trying an Empanada or “Empanadilla.” Eat one for breakfast, lunch, a snack or a late night treat; a classic Puerto Rican Street Food, you’ll find them all across the country in bars, chinchurros, kiosks and corner stores (to name a few!). Typical fillings include: ground beef, chicken, shrimps, tomato sauce and cheese (aka “pizza”) or plain cheese.

We also recommend having our local Don Juan restaurant make you a fresh breakfast empanadilla with ham, egg and cheese. Delicious!

Food to try in Puerto Rico - Empanada


A deep fried, salted cod fish fritter, Bacalaitos are recognizable by their large circular shape. Crispy along the edge with a soft and spongy middle, they’re a salty snack with a touch of garlic and cilantro.


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Tostones are well known across Latin America and are a favorite Fritura here too. Double fried plantains, you’ll find these on pretty much every Puerto Rican menu as an appetizer or side dish. Salt generously and dip into some Mayoketchup (basically mayo mixed with tomato sauce and garlic).


BBQ’d meat skewers, you’ll often find a line waiting for the best pinchos! Usually chicken, a thick sticky marinade is lathered over the meat before being grilled on a smokey BBQ. Topped with a soft piece of white bread these are a favorite snack around PR.

Pinchos - chicken skewers in Pinones
Chicken Pinchos in Piñones


Primarily made with grated yucca, or sometimes with a mixture of green bananas thrown in, Alcapurrias are stuffed with a variety of fillings and then deep fried. Try them fresh with crab meat or beef!


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Kind of  a fried pie – Piononos are green plantains stuffed with spiced ground beef.

Relleno de Papas

Normally stuffed with ground pork, Relleno de Papas are made of mashed potato made into a baseball size, rolled in flour … and then deep fried! Eat it nice and hot!


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Sorullos, or Arepas are a fried cornmeal dish found in Puerto Rico. They are soft on the inside (sometimes with the addition of cheese or plaintain!) with a crispy outer shell.


Delicious Ice cream sold by street vendors. Find them by the beach, in busy hot spots, or pushing their carts around the streets. Each seller normally has a selection of a couple of flavors. The perfect cool treat for hot island weather.

Typical Ice Cream Vendor

Dulce de Coco

A sweet treat, Dulce de Coco is basically sugar and shredded coconut! If you have a sweet tooth you definitely have to try one!

Food to try to Puerto Rico

If you’d like to go on a food hunt and try all of these Puerto Rican street foods, check out our post on a weekend itinerary in San Juan – take the suggested day trip to Pinones!

Been to Puerto Rico?! Comment below to let us know if we’ve missed any of your favorites off the list!

Must Try Puerto Rican Street Food
Article Name
Must Try Puerto Rican Street Food
Must Try Puerto Rican Street Food! Try as many of these frituras and snacks as you can while visiting the Caribbean island.
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Casa Santurce

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